Dad’s Take: Our family of five recently enjoyed the services of a 2014 Kia Forte for a week. Taxi-mom to grocery store delivery to baseball tournament shuttle the Forte was up for the challenge. Marketed as a compact sedan, the Forte had plenty of room for all five of us and the assortment of gear that accompanies our daily routine. The spacious trunk of the Forte was up to the challenges of backpacks, groceries, dance paraphernalia, and baseball gear, with plenty of room for any other activities that may come up. Our weekend included a trip out of town overnight for a baseball tournament and the luggage was easily absorbed by the Forte. Any trip out of town with all three kids elbow to elbow in one row is a scary proposition we usually try to avoid yet the Forte had ample leg room for all the gadgets and whatnots kids like to have at hand.
Stylish and sporty, I was impressed with the Forte’s agility and grace. Our weekend trip included an unexpected and out of season September deluge. Central California’s notorious lack of weather means that the first rain in months means nasty traffic conditions. The navigation system was extremely helpful with notifications of accidents and road work on all available routes to our destination and we did eventually get there to find out that the tournament was cancelled due to weather. Back into the Forte for a cruise back home while enjoying the Sirius XM Audio System and the sleek smart interior. Turns out the sunroof is also a great rain roof, giving a splash free view of a raindrops final descent from heaven to ground. Who needs a DVD player? The Forte held its own as radio reports of accidents littering our path and we safely made it home without incident.
Mom’s Take: My kids have been waiting for it, now they have it! Heated rear seats on the left and the right (sorry youngest child!). Controls are on the door panel and on that rainy day they used them to their delight!
The center containers for phones, wallets, etc has a pull-cover to conceal all your important items when you get out of the car. If for any reason someone is snooping through car windows, that added security can mean break-in prevention. Just having a USB cord left without your phone attached can say, “there are expensive items in this car!” and can be an invitation back for a thief. I tend not to overreact, but it’s the holiday season and desperate people are looking into cars!
One dashboard help I appreciate is the sensor lights at all four corners of the vehicle! We are one of the few people we notice on our block that actually utilizes our garage for our cars. But, like any functional garage, my husband has his work space in there, we store bikes and other items so it can be somewhat of an obstacle course. When pulling in to park in the garage the sensors will beep at any of the corners if something is potentially too close. The same works when you are in reverse, not only does the back up camera help tremendously, but the sensors picked up a scooter that was very close to the back of the car.
One of the only negatives I found with having the sunroof open was that at a certain time of day the sun reflects on the silver strip on the dashboard for a potentially dangerous glare. Of course it’s a simple fix, but something I wanted to share. Luckily I had a passenger who could close the sunroof while I blinked to gain back my vision after I saw spots.
For a compact sedan, the Kia Forte is a compelling choice that all consumers should consider. It has the all the style, safety and performance one needs with a price tag starting at $19,400.
We were provided with a car for one week to facilitate this review, all opinions are our own.